Food Review - The Provision Shop

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Provison Shop Exterior

#Throwback, 50 years ago

I was invited by the 8 Days Eat team to The Provision Shop (TPS) for an exclusive food tasting session, where we were one of the first few people to taste the new dishes even before the media gets invited! I have never been to TPS, so the first impression that I got from both the name and the cafe decor was: "Got sell ang-ku-kueh?"

Sea Salt Lemonade ($6)

Sea Salt Lemonade

While we were waiting for the food to be served, we were served this Sea Salt Lemonade to quench our hunger. This is super refreshing and it really whets up your appetite because of both the saltiness from the sea salt and the sourness from the lemons! This is pretty unique as I seldom see this kind of concoction in cafes. 

Gazpacho with Avocado, Sweet Corn Salsa and Tangerine Oil ($9)

Gazpacho with Avocado, Sweet Corn Salsa and Tangerine Oil

Finally, the first dish is served with much fanfare from the table (We were all hungry LOL). This is not your normal soup as this is actually served cold. You will also experience the very interesting slight fizz on your tongue when you send the spoon into your mouth! It makes you want to drink more because the taste is just so unique. The chef later explained that the fizz that we experienced is the result of some chemical reactions with the ingredients used. MIND-BLOWN *BOOOOOOM!*

You would have noticed that sometimes, my alter-ego #auntiebean, surfaces in some of my blog posts. However, this time, the Evilbean thinks that TPS should actually cut down on the portion of the soup. (WHAT?!!) That is because the taste kinda become too much after several mouthfuls. Cutting down the portion of this can actually make people crave for the main course more! So, if you decide to head down TPS the next time and see this served in half a portion, this is because we suggested it. DON'T PUNCH US!

Caprese: Tomatoes, Buffalo Mozzarella, Basil, Balsamic & Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($12)

Caprese: Tomatoes, Buffalo Mozzarella, Basil, Balsamic & Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Our salad entree is the Caprese. This is very flavourful and nice, but it was quite hard to eat. It would be better if TPS can serve this with the tomato, basil and mozzarella all in bite-sized portions! Would make for better presentation and it's easier to eat as well! Something like this:

Caprese Salad Skewers

Burrata & Homemade Walnut Pesto ($18)

Burrata & Homemade Walnut Pesto

THIS.IS.SUPER.GOOD! The bread is toasted to that perfect crispy crunch, and it has that slightly charred taste which goes perfectly with the Burrata cheese! After carefully cutting a portion of the cheese that is drizzled with walnut pesto and placing it on top of a slice of bread, I put it in my mouth and bite into it...

Firstly, your teeth sinks into that soft, creamy layer of cheese. Then comes the part where you have to chew the bread and you can literally hear the crunchy bread making love to the smooth, buttery cheese inside your mouth! You might find that $18 might be too much to pay for a few pieces of bread and a chunk of cheese. But, did you know that Burrata cheese is actually an artisan cheese, and they are actually expensive because they are known for their buttery and creamy taste! If you are trying to impress that girl who loves cheese, bring her here for this Burrata and you will score a few brownie, or rather, cheese points from her!

Steamed Mussels (Price Unknown)

Steamed Mussels

I am not a fan of mussels so I only ate a piece of the mussel and sipped the sauce. Can't comment much on this.

Truffle Alfredo Pasta (Not in the menu)

Truffle Alfredo Pasta

I love creamy stuff, and I like truffle oil! This is a yummy yummy combination that Chef Anthony should definitely put on the menu! The pasta is also cooked al-dente so it was chewy and firm, loved it!

Contechino Sausage, Cannellini Beans, Zuchinni, Butternut Squash & Fresh Herbs in a Light Chicken Broth ($18)

Contechino Sausage, Cannellini Beans, Zuchinni, Butternut Squash & Fresh Herbs in a Light Chicken Broth

Do not mistake the three slices of sausage that you see in the picture for luncheon meat. But in fact, you would definitely mistake it for luncheon meat because the contechino sausage taste like luncheon meat. LOL did I just confuse you? 

This did not impress me at all as the meat was soggy, and the broth suffered from too much herbs with little chicken taste. 

Spiced Rubbed Sakura Chicken, Roasted Tomatilla Salsa, Feta, Chickpea & Coriander Salad ($16)

Spiced Rubbed Sakura Chicken, Roasted Tomatilla Salsa, Feta, Chickpea & Coriander Salad

This is a MUST-TRY! The chicken skin is crispy, while the meat is flavourful! The chef did a good job in rubbing and "bua-ing" the chicken with the spices. It is so good you can actually eat it on its own (SORRY I STOLE YOUR TAGLINE GARDENIA). Even so, you should not, because that tomatilla salsa sauce is AWESOME. It adds an extra punch to the chicken because it is spicy and flavourful! If you eat the chickpeas one by one, you can be there for an hour because they gave us so much! 

And then finally, my favourite.. DESSERTS!

Creme Brulee ($3.50)

The quality of ingredients used in this creme brulee is top notch! The custard base was light and really smooth, almost like you are eating chawanmushi. The caramalised sugar is not overpowering sweet and goes well with the custard. Apparently, the taste is so good thanks to the quality sugar used by the chef which even hotels don't use. If you like creme brulee, you need to try this to taste the difference!

Dark Chocolate Black Forest Ice-Cream and Blueberry Lemon Cake (Price Unknown)

The cake is so moist and smooth that we were just gobbling it up! I loved pairing it with the ice-cream, although they were two separate desserts. The cake could have been even better it came with actual blueberries and lemons, would look more pleasing aesthetically!

Latte (Price Unknown)

This was the only thing that I saw that was "provision shop" themed - kopitiam style cups holding our lattes! The coffee was okay-ish though. I think they sprinkled coffee powder on top of the coffee, so the first thing I tasted was the bitterness before the wave of latte comes through the froth to wash it down. 

Overall, I felt that there are still lots of room for improvement in terms of the food and the presentation. The place is quite ulu, so it really needs to have a couple of really good, interesting food to entice customers to keep coming back. I heard that the Belinda's Perogis is really awesome, so I will go back there again to try it!

Cafe Rating (out of 5 Evilbeans):


Evilbean's last words/recommendation:
- A cozy place that emphasizes on using good quality ingredients. Serves a few unique dishes that can be hard to find in Singapore!
- MUST-ORDER: Sea Salt Lemonade, Burrata & Homemade Walnut Pesto, Spiced Rubbed Sakura Chicken, Creme Brulee

Check out the behind-the-scenes footage of our food tasting session! I was trying to act normal despite knowing that 8 Days Eat was filming us. Thankfully it's just a 7 second clip... for now.

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